Sunday, September 15, 2013

Ten Things of Thankful Week 15 Take 2

Ten Things of Thankful

So…I am all kinds of thankful for yesterday and the “sort of” impromptu road trip we took.

I say “sort of” impromptu, because we planned it on Thursday. In my world, that is very fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants. No judging me, Christine…I know you are the quintessential fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants girl. You’re the yin to my yang. Or something like that. It's why we work as BFFs. ;)

Anyway…I decided to tell you about our escapades through my thankfulness list. I’m so clever, right? Ok not really but here it goes:

1.  I am thankful that we finally found the opportunity to make the trek to Black Pine Animal Sanctuary up in Albion, Indiana. My mom and I had been talking about it, so the six of us (we let Mr. Always Random and my dad also accompany us) made the trip. It’s about three hours one-way, so yes, it is a trek…it’s not just me being overly-hyperbolic (I don’t think that’s a word, but I’m certain it makes my point). So that was six hours car-time…but totally worth it. The sanctuary was amazing and we learned so much! Wahoo!

2. I am thankful to know that exotic animals living in private homes is not something regulated by the great state of Indiana. As the woman leading our tour mentioned yesterday, we should probably take a lesson from Ohio and be proactive rather than reactive. Not trying to be a huge mouth-piece for anything here…I’m just sayin’.

3. To further that point, I am thankful to know that a neighbor could EASILY have (for instance) a five-foot alligator in his basement to whom he occasionally throws raw chicken or other various things…and I/we would be completely unawares, because the state doesn’t regulate such things and the neighbor would not be required by law to inform me. That’s just awesome.

4. I am thankful for places such as Black Pine Animal Sanctuary who take in and care for animals who have been house-raised, circus-raised, or road-side zoo-raised...and give them quality of life for the remainder of their days. 

Here’s a picture of my favorite guy at the sanctuary: Tarzan the chimp. He has a security blanket which is actually a large spoon. He carries it with all the time and the staff said it never leaves his side. He likes to look at his reflection in it and the many mirrors they put up in his habitat for him.

My 12yo took this picture...this is Tarzan :)
My 10yo took this picture
My dad took this one
For the record, I also took pictures but not with a fancy camera like they have...just my phone. So I'm choosing to just display their handiwork.

5. I am thankful that we didn’t get thrown out of the place for being disobedient during the tour. I shall explain, as we are not typically ones for shenanigans or mayhem, so you may be confused. During the tour, the guide informed us that as we passed by one enclosure in particular, we were not allowed to look at the animal and we needed to stay away from the cage…as this particular animal didn’t really like people (especially big groups) and would charge the fence if she felt threatened. Well, we missed the part about what kind of animal it was so that right there was enough to make us curious.

We HAD to look.

So…individually (and unbeknownst to one another) we were all sneaking furtive glances toward the cage. Except for Mr. Always Random…he was considerably bolder than the rest of us; he looked right over there like he owned the place. He's like that...

Fortunately the animal (it was a tiger, BTW) wasn’t paying attention. But we didn’t let our gaze last for too long. We didn’t want to tempt fate. Not did we want a tiger to charge at us, even with a fence between us.

6. I am thankful that when the little bobcat (I think it was a bobcat, but can’t exactly recollect for certain…a member of the feline family…we’ll leave it at that) decided to spray the fence that we were not close enough to receive it full-force. But man…it was pungent! Yikes! I would NOT have wanted to ride home the three hours in that funk.

7. I am thankful for our discovery of a little State Park we didn’t know existed: Chain O’Lakes State Park. Such a lovely little park…we ate our picnic there, walked around for a few minutes and even toured the “nature center”. It was in proportion to the size of the park. Small.

8. I am thankful for a back still without pain. Spending all that time SITTING in the car yesterday, I was a little nervous before I got up this morning. But Joy or joys: I can still stand up straight today with no pain. (Lest you be confused, you may recall from my post last week, I was struggling a bit with my back…but no more! Wahoo!).

9. I am thankful to have FINALLY enjoyed a little place called Ivanhoe’s. Yum. And yes, I am talking about food again. It probably wouldn’t be a post from me (or a thankfulness post at least) if at least one of the line items wasn’t about food. And no, we did not eat “real” food. It was the ice cream we were after. And though it was only 4pm when we ate, it was dinner. And it might have been the best dinner I have ever eaten. 

I am sorry to say that I didn’t take any pictures…I was too intent on my ice cream. You'll have to picture it in your mind. Trust me...I am picturing it right now. I think another road-trip is in order...

When you look at the menu (I’m certain you all will) on the website, my husband had Shake #97. My 12yo had Shake #41 (his father’s genes are strong…no way would anyone in MY family order that…what’s the point if there’s no chocolate?). My 10yo ordered Shake #21…Chocolate Anonymous. Yes.he.did. However, they made an error and instead gave him Sundae #22, which is also Chocolate Anonymous, but in sundae form. WOW. 

10. This leads me to my last item of thankful which is that I didn’t get a huge sundae or shake (just took it easy with only a couple scoops of ice cream...I just couldn't decide which one to choose...there are 100 sundaes and 100 shakes!...and I didn't want to "choose wrong!") because the 10yo needed help…and I was the best one for the job.

Have a fabulous week!


  1. COMPLETELY unregulated? Wow! That's so sad! Leaves so many animals open to abuse! Makes me thankful we have so many strong pieces of legislation in force over here.

    Thank goodness such a resort exists to care for those animals who make it through! What a special place to visit :) I'm glad y'all had fun (in spite of the trek - and it really does sound like it was!)

    The shake-shop sounds fun. If you're into that.
    I'm one of those strange beings who'd rather not have chocolate, and probably would pass on ice-cream, too. (sweets are another matter altogether)

    WHOOT! Twosies *hi-fives you*

    1. It is so varies from state to state and ours currently has none.

      Well, I shall still consider you a friend, in spite of the fact that you would bypass chocolate. Everyone has their downfalls, right? ;)


  2. I've been known, on vacation, to occasionally have ice cream as a meal. John likes to remind me of a Seinfeld quote--something to the effect that "You never really lose your appetite. You will have another one." So if we happen upon a good ice cream shop at lunchtime, ice cream it is!

  3. I am thankful that I have bumped into an animal lover like myself! Hope you've had a great weekend!

  4. Sounds like a wonderful trip and great time spent with family.

  5. How fun!! This is such a great list ...almost makes me feel as though I were there!

    *we've done dessert as a meal before too, I am SO NOT judging.... ;)

    1. Oh don't get me wrong...this is not the first time we've had dessert as dinner, but is possibly the first time I have announced it so publicly :)

  6. Go you taking a road trip with only two days notice!! :)
    The kids and I are looking for a day thing to do over October break, since the high school and middle school have different amounts of time off. Should this be the area we explore?

    1. I knew you'd be impressed.

      I think this would be a lovely place for you to explore...I was quite surprised, actually, at how nice the area was. And because I know you LOVE to camp, the state park has camping available. ;)

  7. I think there are probably a LOT of people who are glad you didn't get sprayed by the bobcat.

    Glad your back is continuing to feel better. There are parts of your body that you can rest when injured, but your back surely ain't one of 'em.

    Ahhh, ice cream!

    1. Yes, that's probably true.

      Yes, I am hoping this will be the last time I mention my back for a long, long time. And's not something you can rest. Even when I do try to "rest" it, that never works because I'm LYING on it. :)

      Yes...and BTW did you order those caramels yet? LOL

  8. You had me from the beginning--because you were talking about animals. I was a little concerned about no regulations and that my neighbor could have some sort of wild animal in his/her home--but on the other hand, I love animals and would love to see all the ones you pictured. Close up. Like Tarzan. And all the others too. I would have been like your husband and stared at the cage they said not to. I'm like that. Sort of a rebel. A mild one. Anyway, moving on. I'm an ice cream addict and could lick some every single day except then I wouldn't fit into my clothes and I'd have to exercise two hours a day instead of one. So I'll eat it a couple times a week instead. Thanks for sharing your list. I found you on Kristi@Finding Ninee's. I participated this week too--even though I don't always get to. I'm at Out One Ear. I have a Sunday, Share Your Story on my Facebook page. You put a link of your favorite story in the comments. If you'd like to participate, please do.

    1. Thank you so much for all your thoughts and for letting me know how you found me. And also about your FB page...I'll have to check it out! Thanks for stopping by! :)